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Stars Hope to Take the Lead in Game 3 Tonight

Sunday, 04.15.2007 / 9:39 AM ET / News
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Stars Hope to Take the Lead in Game 3 Tonight
Marty Turco has received plenty of criticism for his career playoff record. Allowing one goal in the last seven periods should go a long way toward silencing that.

Turco and the Dallas Stars hope to take a lead in a postseason series for the first time in four years Sunday night when they host the Vancouver Canucks in Game 3 of their first-round matchup.

If there was any negative hangover from the Stars' 5-4, four-overtime loss in Game 1 on Wednesday, it certainly didn't show in Game 2 on Friday.

Jeff Halpern and Joel Lundqvist scored on the opening shift in each of the first two periods, and Turco made 35 saves for his first career postseason shutout as Dallas evened this series with a 2-0 victory.

With the win, the Stars gave themselves a chance to lead a playoff series for the first time since they beat Edmonton in six games in the 2003 Western Conference quarterfinals. They lost to Anaheim in six games in the next series and to Colorado in five games in each of the past two seasons.

Turco was at his best Friday in the third period, when he turned aside all 17 shots. He allowed Henrik Sedin's goal with 1:54 left in the fourth overtime of Game 1 and has stopped 68 of the last 69 shots he's faced.

Turco, who had been 1-7 in his previous eight road playoff games, improved his overall career postseason record to 9-15.

"I thought I had one the other night," Turco said with a smile, pointing to three scoreless overtime periods. "I count those. It doesn't really mean anything, it's all about the first win of our series."

The shutout was the first for the Stars in the playoffs since Ed Belfour blanked New Jersey in Game 5 of the 2000 Stanley Cup finals. Dallas won that game 1-0 on Mike Modano's goal in the third overtime.

"I've never second-guessed what I can do," Turco said. "There's been disappointment, there's going to be more at times down the road. I've talked a lot about it, just doing what I can and really concentrating 100 percent on that and just accepting what comes."

Friday's victory bodes well for the Stars, who have won eight of their last nine series when they've won Game 2. Dallas, though, has lost its lost four home playoff games.

After going nearly 80 minutes without beating Roberto Luongo in Game 1, the Stars only needed 24 seconds of Game 2 to take a 1-0 lead. Halpern gave Turco all the support he needed by deflecting Sergei Zubov's pass from the point behind the sliding Canucks goaltender.

"I don't know if you can plan something like that but we wanted to come out early and have a good effort to start the game," Dallas' Stu Barnes said. "It was nice to get the goal really early like that."

No team has been better with a lead this season than the Stars, who were 26-1-2 when leading after the first period during the regular season.

Lundqvist's first career playoff goal 45 seconds into the second period gave the Stars, what has been for them, an insurmountable lead. Dallas is 29-0 with a two-goal lead, joining Buffalo as the only teams to win every game they held a two-goal advantage in during the regular season.

Luongo stopped 23 shots Friday after he made a playoff franchise-record 72 saves in his postseason debut in Game 1.

"For me tonight it was two mistakes at the beginning of each the first and second period from two different forwards that led to tap-in goals for them," Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said. "And it wasn't the fact our guys were fatigued, it was just we didn't bring our best game to the table."

Injuries to regulars Matt Cooke, Alex Burrows and Ryan Kesler forced the Canucks to insert center Tommi Santala, a healthy scratch in Game 1, and call up forwards Nathan Smith and Jannik Hansen from the AHL for Game 2. Kesler is expected to miss the rest of this series with a broken finger.

Hansen played well in his NHL debut on a line with Brendan Morrison and captain Markus Naslund, registering four shots on goal in only 9:43 of ice time.

Game 4 is Tuesday at Dallas.

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Huberdeau 79 15 39 10 54
J. Jokinen 81 8 36 -2 44
N. Bjugstad 72 24 19 -7 43
A. Ekblad 81 12 27 12 39
B. Boyes 78 14 24 11 38
A. Barkov 71 16 20 -4 36
J. Hayes 72 19 16 -4 35
B. Campbell 82 3 24 4 27
B. Pirri 49 22 2 6 24
D. Bolland 53 6 17 4 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 28 19 12 .921 2.35
A. Montoya 6 7 2 .892 3.01
 
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